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No Kill Delaware

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SOCIETY FOR THE PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS SPCA
November 19, 2012

In 2011, I adopted three dogs who had been pulled from death row at KCSPCA. Every time I look at my dogs, I am sickened by the knowldege that they would be dead if a rescue group had not pulled them out of KCSPCA.

Baxter, my Boxer/Pit Bull mix, was on the KCSPCA kill list because he was evaluated as being "aggressive" and also as hating men. He is a goofy love dog and he doesn't have a mean bone in his body. He adores all the men in my family.

Pearl, my beagle, was on the KCSPCA kill list for being too "shy," and she is indeed shy and fearful. So what? She loves the other dogs and she loves me. She is still a little afraid of my husband but lately has been sniffing and licking him more often.

Papi, my other beagle, was on the KCSPCA kill list for being too old. And yes, he is a senior, but he is healthy. He loves cuddling and he loves his food and treats. We will love him every day for as much time as he has left.

It is horrible that my three dogs would have been killed at KCSPCA. It is horrible that any dogs and cats are killed for space at KCSPCA. Unless they are in such pain that it is truly a mercy to put them down, these dogs and cats should be allowed to live and love in new families who will cherish them.

Kent County SPCA chooses to kill homeless cats and dogs. The KCSPCA save rate for the 2nd quarter of 2012 was only 67%, with about 1,000 animals who were killed or died at the shelter. http://www.kcspca.org/about-us/shelter-statistics.htm

Kent County SPCA has said in the past that they cannot go No Kill because they have dog control contracts. That is no excuse: other No Kill shelters across America do animal control. In fact, two shelters in Delaware have dog control contracts.

About a year ago, the KCSPCA shelter Director resigned, and the Board of Directors had the opportunity to choose a new Director who would reform the facility and go No Kill. Instead the Board chose a new Director who is perfectly happy to continue the convenience killing that has long been the tradition of KCSPCA.

I am the blogger for No Kill Delaware, so I track on an ongoing basis what is happening at KCSPCA in relation to the literature and news about American animal shelters. I also compare what Kent County SPCA does with the four No Kill shelters in Delaware: Safe Haven Animal Sanctuary, Faithful Friends, Delaware Humane, Delaware SPCA.

No Kill shelters are guided by the "No Kill Equation" developed by Nathan Winograd, an important leader in the No Kill movement. The No Kill Equation includes rescue partnerships; foster care; comprehensive adoption program; Trap Neuter Return for community cats; volunteers; community relations; medical/behavior rehabilitation; high-volume, low cost spay/neuter for the community; pet retention programs; and a hard-working compassionate Director.

KCSPCA could implement the No Kill Equation and be a No Kill shelter, but the Board of Directors and the Executive Director refuse to stop the killing.

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None

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No

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Badly

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

MY ROLE:
Client Served

SAFE HAVEN ANIMAL SANCTUARY OF SUSSEX COUNTY INC
November 17, 2012

I have written one review about Safe Haven Animal Shelter as a Donor and volunteer. I am writing this more critical review as a person with some expertise about animal shelters (see note below).
Any No Kill shelter is infinitely better than a pound that resorts to convenience killing, of course. However, as a No Kill shelter, Safe Haven has management problems that make it less effective than the other No Kill shelters in Delaware. Certainly some of these problems at Safe Haven can be attributed to its start-up, with a new building and new staff in 2012. However, the Executive Director and Board of Directors need to focus on these problems and resolve them if Safe Haven is to reach its potential.
MEDICAL CENTER The Executive Director did not hire a full-time veterinarian or equip the Medical Center on a timely basis, despite the fact there were funds earmarked for that from a major donation. This impacts not only the care of the animals in the shelter, but it also means that there is no Trap Neuter Return program, and no high-volume or low cost spay/neuter for the pets in the community yet.
ADOPTION Safe Haven must increase the numbers of animals adopted into good homes. As a No Kill shelter with a dog control contract, Safe Haven must quickly move animals from the shelter into good homes by more effective use of social media, ads in newspapers, and special events and promotions at the building and at off-site locations. One factor impeding the adoption of a number of animals is the Executive Director’s “bonded pair” policy; when two animals who came into the shelter separately get along, the Director sometimes decides they must be adopted together, which makes it much more difficult to get them into homes. Finally, the building is only open to the public a very limited number of hours a week – just on Fridays and Saturdays; people who want to see the animals on other days must make appointments. That definitely hinders adoptions.
FOSTER HOMES Safe Haven needs to work harder to develop a good network of foster homes for animals who should not be in a shelter: young puppies, kittens, and dogs or cats who are sick or elderly.
VOLUNTEERS More volunteers are needed not only to help with the animals in the new building, but also in the private kennels where dogs are being boarded on an overflow basis because there is no room at the sanctuary. Dogs and cats in shelters need attention and love on a daily basis, and volunteers are essential for that. REPORTING Delaware shelters are required by law to report online their statistics on a quarterly basis including data on intake, adoptions, returns to owner, transfers, and euthanasia. Safe Haven has not posted their statistics online.

NOTE: As the blogger for No Kill Delaware, I follow the literature and national news about animal shelters, with a special focus on Delaware shelters. Four of the five shelters in Delaware are committed to the No Kill ethic: Safe Haven Animal Sanctuary, Faithful Friends, Delaware Humane, Delaware SPCA. No Kill shelters save 90% and more of the animals.
The Kent County SPCA in Delaware is not committed to No Kill ethic and their save rate is much lower than 90%.
No Kill advocates are working to make Delaware a No Kill state. Delaware has a very progressive Companion Animal Protection Act (CAPA) based on the model of the No Kill Advocacy Center, a national advocacy group. No Kill shelters are guided by the "No Kill Equation" developed by Nathan Winograd, an important leader in the No Kill movement. The No Kill Equation includes rescue partnerships; foster care; comprehensive adoption program; Trap Neuter Return for community cats; volunteers; community relations; medical/behavior rehabilitation; high-volume, low cost spay/neuter for the community; pet retention programs; and a hard-working compassionate Director. While this is a challenging set of programs, they are critical to the success of a No Kill shelter.

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Okay

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A lot

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

MY ROLE:
Professional with expertise in this field